How to plan a first date

There is a lot of pressure when it comes to planning a first date. You have no idea whether you two will connect, whether you’re going to enjoy your time together or whether you’ll want to set up a second date. There’s no denying it’s a stressful situation, but here are a few things you can do to ensure you have the best experience possible.

Couple on a date

Ensure the timing is right

The timing can make or break how good you feel about a first date.

Ultimately you have no idea how smoothly a date will go until you’re on it. So giving the date a small window of time that can then be extended is often a good idea. Starting with a coffee or a quick bite to eat is great because you’ll have about an hour to get a sense if a connection exists between you. If so, you can suggest catching a movie afterward. A first date is the perfect opportunity to spend some time together and see if the two of you are a good fit, so plan it right, and you’re sure to have the best possible experience.

The time of day at which the date occurs is also important. If you know you have an early morning the next day, don’t put extra stress on yourself by scheduling a late movie. Instead, opt for a lunch or other daytime outing. The time at which you have your first date can have just as much bearing on its success as its length can, so plan on a time that works for both of you.

Pick the perfect activity

Even the most theoretically perfect date can go awry if you’re engaging in something that either one or both of you isn’t interested in. Seeing a movie when you’d really rather sit and talk to get to know the other person can leave you feeling frustrated, and that can cast a negative aura over the whole experience. Make sure you get a solid sense of what each of you wants to do, and proceed accordingly.

If you know you share a common interest, such as cycling or artwork, consider an activity along those lines. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to planning your first date — it may make for a great story down the road!

Share new experiences

On the third, fourth or fifth date, activities where one of you teaches the other something new is a fun and sometimes eye-opening experience. But for the first date it’s better to do something where neither of you has the upper hand. A great way to do that is by picking an activity that neither of you has attempted in the past. Visiting a brand new gallery, taking part in a new physical challenge such as wall climbing or experimenting with a new kind of cuisine are just a few of the many options you can consider. You’ll get to spend the day learning together, and that is bound to leave you with some good memories!

more on dating

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Speed dating: Should you try it?
Online dating: 6 Guys to avoid

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